There are many ways in which a municipality influences the vitality and employment situation of its region. Municipalities create the conditions for vitality and employment, for example by means of planning and traffic policy, public procurement, education and business services.
As employers, municipalities are of key importance and employ a significant number of employees. Municipalities are key employers of the female labour force in particular. The Left Alliance believes that municipalities must be responsible and fair employers. Healthy, competent and motivated employees are able to provide municipal citizens with high-quality services.
Municipalities must take responsibility for the employment of long-term unemployed and hard-to-employ people. The Left Alliance believes that municipalities should play an active role in fulfilling this responsibility. It would pay off to provide employment to people rather than pay costs related to unemployment and ill-being.
Representatives of The Left Alliance commit to the following goals:
Planning and traffic policies support vitality
Planning, construction and traffic arrangements must support employment and the vitality of businesses. Public transportation must enable employment, affordable housing must enable the availability of labour force, and municipalities must plan enough commercial slots.
Business services benefit SMEs in particular
In particular, municipal business services must meet the needs of new and small enterprises, for example through business counselling. Municipalities could also offer collaboration facilities to sole entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs must be provided with financial and debt counselling.
Procurement supports local and responsible business operations
Municipal procurement is of key importance to the economy and employment. Social criteria must be applied in procurement, for example to create on-the-job training positions for upper-secondary level students and employment for long-term unemployed persons. Procurement must be planned so that it enables local and small entrepreneurs to participate in bids. Procurement must observe collective agreements and legislation and fair tax payment practices.
Support and employment for the long-term unemployed
An active employment policy and a sufficient employment budget are needed to reduce long-term unemployment. Services for the unemployed must be provided on a one-stop shop basis. We must prevent long-term unemployment by offering health services, rehabilitation, training and pay-subsidised work opportunities to the unemployed. Health check-ups must be provided for all unemployed persons. Misuse of rehabilitative work must be addressed. Sports and exercise services and cultural services must be offered to the unemployed at a reduced rate, in order to support their wellbeing.
Municipalities are good employers
Municipalities employ a large number of people and staff are a key resource of a municipality. The status of employees must be ensured in the major regional and social and health service reform under way. A healthy employer policy does not involve temporary dismissals; instead, sufficient employee resources must be allocated to service provision. Employees must he heard and allowed to participate in the planning of their work. Municipal activities must not be forcefully corporatised or subjected to private profit seeking. Municipalities need to be aware of the increasing diversity of society and promote equality in recruitment.
The municipal employer provides training and supports well-being at work
The municipal employer provides all employees with regular training opportunities and supports their well-being at work. The well-being at work of elderly employees must be supported by means of job rotation and by enabling the voluntary reduction of working hours. Studies show that providing employees with the opportunity to have a say about their working hours prolongs the careers of employees nearing retirement age and reduces early retirement.